Russell races to GT victory in New Zealand
GOONELLABAH resident David Russell has once again shown his versatility on the race track with a winning performance at the Hampton Downs 101 Australian GT Endurance Championship.
Joining long-term Australian and international GT racing partner and team owner Roger Lago, Russell set the lap times to beat, with the pair winning the third round of the endurance championship.
The Lamborghini duo raced a superb victory, overcoming a pit lane drive-through penalty.
Russell gained the race lead just three laps from the end of the 100-lap GT enduro, ensuring a highly exciting finish to the inaugural Hampton Downs 101.
The result comes just one week after Russell stepped out of his factory Nissan Motorsport Supercar at the Gold Coast 600 street race, were he and Dale Wood raced to top Nissan honours at seventh place in the opening Surfers Paradise race.
This was one of two top 10 finishes for Russell after his efforts at the Bathurst 1000.
"This was a dream weekend for us. On top in practice, setting the pace to beat in qualifying and taking the top 10 shoot-out," Russell said. "Even a drive through penalty couldn't hold us back today, no-one was going to take this win from us.
"Roger Lago drove a great race, making up some ground and giving me back the car I needed to push hard for the win.
"We have had an unlucky first couple of rounds in the Australian GT Endurance Championship this season, but we proved without doubt that our small and dedicated team is more than capable of winning.
"We will take this momentum and confidence to Highlands to try and score a trans-Tasman double in two weeks' time."
Russell and Lago finished the Hampton Downs 101 four seconds clear of second-placed John Martin/Duvashen Padayachee in their Walkinshaw Porsche and the Tekno Autosports McLaren of Nathan Morcom and Grant Denyer.
Russell grew up in Caniaba and raced in the the Fujitsu V8 Supercar Series for several years after finding success in the Australian Carrera Cup Championship.
He was based in Brisbane for a number of years before moving back to Goonellabah at the start of this year.